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Vic Tousignant, Q.C.

January 2001

Ragged mountains, deep canyons, mysterious valleys, and awesome sunsets are only a few of the attributes which spring to the mind of anyone who has canoed the Nahanni River in Canada's Northwest Territories.

This mystical river has long been revered as Mecca for many canoeists. It's been my privilege to paddle it twice. Both times, my "Bill Mason 'Heavy Duty' Special" by Fletcher Canoes has been my vessel of choice. A true workhorse, it seemed to be able to carry twice the weight of its fiberglass cousins. I couldn't help but feel a sense of connection with R. M. Patterson who first wrote about poling and paddling this "Dangerous River".

My family and I met Paul Fletcher "on the marge of Lake Laberge" in the summer of 1989 and immediately fell in love with his classical cedar and canvas works of art. We purchased one and took delivery the following spring. There's something about canoeing in a cedar canvas craft that seems so...right. The material is natural, the construction traditional.

Oh sure, it's picked up a few nicks along the way. More than a few, actually. They are testaments to its history and utility. Unlike its owner, however, a little filling and a fresh coat of paint make it as good as new and ensure that this heirloom will bring untold pleasure to my wife Kathleen and me, and to our children, grandchildren and great-grandchildren.

Vic Tousignant, Q.C.
Calgary, Alberta